On This Day: Birth of British cellist Jacqueline du Pré in Oxford (1945)

Born January 26, 1945 in Oxford, England, (died October 19, 1987 in London, England); daughter of Derek and Iris (Greep) Du Pre; married Daniel Barenboim, June 15, 1967; Education: London Cello School; Guildhall School of Music, London, 1960; studied with William Pleeth, Paul Tortelier, Pablo Casals, Mstislaw Rostropovich. Education: London Cello School.

The career of young Jacqueline DuPré lasted a brief 12 years and during that time she graced the stages of the great concert halls of the world, with her passionate performances. Tragically, in October of 1973 she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, leaving her unable to play her cello. The extraordinary talent and charisma of young DuPré were fondly extolled in tributes from her friends and musical colleagues, both during her lifetime and after her death. Recordings of her emotive performances retained their appeal for decades afterward. She is perhaps best remembered by the strains of the Elgar Concerto her signature musical and her numerous renditions of that composition.

Berlin Philharmonic visits Oxford

May Day this year will see Oxford welcoming one of the world’s greatest orchestras.

The Berlin Philharmonic will perform under the baton of frequent guest conductor Daniel Barenboim in a special one off concert at the Sheldonian.

Each year the orchestra selects a venue of cultural importance in a different European city for a televised performance to mark its founding in 1882. The programme for this year’s concert will include a combination of classic Berliner repertoire by Wagner and Brahms, and a nod to Oxford’s musical heritage in the form of the Elgar Cello Concerto, made famous by Oxford-raised cellist, and one-time wife of Barenboim’s, Jaqueline Du Prè.

The announcement has been met with excitement. “I’m so thrilled that an ensemble of this calibre should come to Oxford” said Alice Beckwith, a music student at Lincoln. “The world’s greatest orchestra with a truly great musician at the helm. I can’t wait.”

However, students wishing to see the concert may well be left disappointed, as tickets sold out a matter of hours after going on sale.

[via cherwell.org]